In The Vampire Diaries’ darkest episode yet, Elena is haunted by killing Connor

The Vampire Diaries Season 4, Episode 6 (“We All Go a Little Mad Sometimes”)
Nina Dobrev and Paul Wesley (Image: The CW)

“We All Go a Little Mad Sometimes” is probably one of the darkest episodes the show ever has. All of the episodes since Elena has turned have had a darker tone in general, but this one gets even darker with the Hunter’s curse. It primarily deals with the fallout of Elena killing Connor in the previous episode, and how that affects her psychologically. She is being literally and metaphorically haunted by her actions and it leads to her almost committing suicide.

Regardless of the Hunter’s curse, Elena was not likely to deal with the fact that she killed someone very well. However, the curse intensifies her guilt and reminds her of how horrible the act was. She is seeing Connor everywhere, including hallucinating that other people who are trying to help her are actually him. He tells her that she deserves to die for killing him. She is also hallucinating others including Katherine who tells her what a terrible person she has become and that Stefan will no longer love her. Finally she sees her mom when she goes to Wickery Bridge. Elena sees the bridge as the place where she should have died, twice. Every time I watch this scene of her mom telling her that Jeremy will be better off without her around, and that killing herself is the right thing to do, it breaks my heart. Elena doesn’t really want to die but the curse is designed to convince the vampire that they should. Even Klaus says he wanted to kill himself when he had the curse, and that he only reason he didn’t was because he is immortal.

Connor is almost successful in convincing Elena to commit suicide when she throws her daylight ring in the lake just before sunrise. However, conveniently, the others figure out that to stop the curse they have to awaken a new hunter and Jeremy just happens to be a potential. Jeremy kills a hybrid and officially becomes one of The Five and joins the ranks of the supernatural. I believe this leaves only Matt as a normal human in the main cast. Jeremy’s role as a Hunter is convenient for the plot here because it makes saving Elena’s life easy and she is only subjected to the curse for one day. However, it is very inconvenient considering that most of his friends, and only family member, are vampires. Even if it poses potential problems, it does give Jeremy a sense of purpose which is something that the show has struggled to give him for most of the series.

Stefan and Elena break up as well at the end of the episode, which was probably for the best. Their relationship has struggled since she became a vampire and Stefan hasn’t really known how to handle it. They both are disappointed with who she has become since she turned, but cannot change it unless they find the cure. Elena has been untrusting of Stefan since she found out that he made some secret deal with Klaus. She uses her distrust of Stefan to push him away and turn to Damon instead, something that she has been fighting, but really wanting, since she turned. Stefan realizes this and decides he can’t do it anymore. In keeping with the mood of the episode, the break up is very somber. Neither of them are really fighting for the relationship and both feel pretty resigned to its fate. What I don’t like about this scene is that they make their reason for breaking up all about Damon. They had other reasons that their relationship wasn’t working that aren’t addressed here. Ever since she turned, Stefan has not been comfortable with Elena as she is. She admits that she has changed since she became a vampire and that she no longer feels like the person who chose him. I don’t think that their relationship really works with them both being vampires, their bond was rooted in humanity. It is not just that as a vampire, Elena feels more connected to Damon, but also Stefan feels less connected to her when she is a vampire. A major issue with this love triangle is that the show has to have her always connected to at least one Salvatore. Instead of acknowledging the issues in Elena and Stefan’s relationship and letting it fall apart on its own, they have to make it about Damon.

Other than my issues with the breakup scene, this is one of my favorite episodes. It is dark and somber but also moves both character and plot development forward. The Hunter’s curse is an interesting way of visualizing the pain that killing someone has caused Elena. She is being literally haunted by what she did and it almost kills her. Elena and Stefan’s breakup was necessary at this point if Elena is ever going to adjust to being a vampire. She needs to explore what this darker side of hers is, and be okay with it, and she was never going to be able to feel like she could do that with Stefan.

Episode Grade: A-

Other Thoughts:

  • Damon: “You should’ve called Stefan… P.S. I called Stefan”
  • Klaus could not be more thrilled that Tyler and Caroline are “breaking up” but he is trying to look sympathetic to Caroline.
  • Stefan: “You’re using your calm voice today. Who’s getting killed?”
  • April Young is still asking about Rebekah… that girl is very persistent.
  • Damon: “How does Klaus know anything? Guy’s like a billion years old”
  • Klaus was tormented by the hunter’s curse for 52 years, 4 months, and 9 days – if he killed five of them, did he have to wait for all five to be replaced?
  • Katherine: “Don’t you ever stop crying? Poor Elena, always the victim”
  • Even if it was a hallucination, I was excited to see Katherine again.
  • Damon: “Little Gilbert, your services are needed”
  • Bonnie/Jeremy: “We need you to kill a vampire” “Ok, great. Give me a stake, I’ll kill Damon right now”
  • Matt/Damon: “Still saving a seat for Mr. Saltzman huh?” “I’d say I’m in the market for a new drinking buddy. You’re not qualified”
  • Matt: “We live in a town, where, you know, anybody who knows stuff is creepy until proven otherwise”
  • Shane is very creepy and somehow connected to everything.
  • Body Count: 1, Jeremy kills Chris the un-sired hybrid.

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